Dear Gossips,

We are now inside ten days until the Oscars. Earlier this week the Academy confirmed its second round of presenters including Angela Bassett, Chadwick Boseman, Laura Dern, Samuel L Jackson, Jason Momoa, Javier Bardem, and more. Also Daenerys Targaryen will be there as Emilia Clarke begins her post-GoT era. Will be interesting to see how this year unfolds for her with Game of Thrones concluding just before the summer, making its final award season run through the fall, and right in the middle of it, in November, the premiere of her new movie Last Christmas, directed by Paul Feig, featuring the songs of George Michael, co-starring Henry Golding. It’s expected to be the romantic comedy of the holiday season. If Beale Street Could Talk’s Kiki Layne and Toronto’s very own Stephan James will also be presenting. 

So it’s supposed to be an exciting time, right? The pre-Oscar parties will be kicking off soon, the whole town will be out and celebrating itself, everyone should be wondering about what film will prevail in the Best Picture category and whether or not the Oscars will deliver a major shock – because this would be the year for it – only instead people are still confused and upset about the broadcast, and what will and won’t be broadcast, following the Academy’s announcement last week that four categories will be presented during commercial break and then edited to be put back into the show. All this after people were already pissed about not having all the nominated songs featured in the show, a decision the Academy ended up reversing

Now a group of filmmakers, among them Christopher Nolan, Alfonso Cuaron, Martin Scorsese, Alejandro G Inarritu, Guillermo del Toro, Spike Lee, Robert De Niro, George Clooney, Brad Pitt, and more have signed an open letter urging the Academy to just leave everything as is and not f-ck around with the format. The show is happening in nine days! Is it going to be a scramble? 

Here’s the reality that the Academy is working with: they’ve promised to keep the show to three hours. The network wants them to keep the show to three hours. In order to keep the show to three hours, people have to keep their acceptance speeches short – preferably interesting, but short. To be fair to the Academy, every year they ask the nominees to be brief, and every year, so many of them get up there and start thanking their agents and managers and lawyers, because these people evidently need to hear their names said on television and the winners can’t risk pissing them off and jeopardising future jobs. Some of those same people are the ones demanding that the Oscars include all the awards and the songs during the broadcast. Well you can’t have it both ways. You can’t insist that the Oscars overlook certain categories and nominees, even though it makes for a longer show, and then be BORED AND BORING during the show. They too have an obligation to participate in a better show – nominees and presenters and winners. Because if they’re interested in preserving the integrity of the award show that means most to them, they have to make an investment too. 

As for that three hour run time ideal… 

If we want all the performers to perform, and all 24 categories to be represented, and those 24 winners to have their moment on the stage, and be entertained by the presenters – like this, one of my favourites of the last decade….


(It’s the way he says, “It’s a collaboration”. Kills me every time.)

….it’s going to be a long show!

And as Duana and I keep saying on Show Your Work, some of us don’t want the Oscars to be shorter! Some of us have been waiting all year for the Oscars! This is four hours of watching narcissists glorify and backstab each other at the same time – what is the f-cking problem?!? 

I’m from the time when the Oscars used to be on a Monday. This year is actually the 20th anniversary of the Oscars happening on Sundays. You used to have to go to school or work the whole day and then come home and get your dinner ready and stay up until midnight. Nobody was complaining! And now? Now you have all weekend to prepare. You can rest on Saturday and all of Sunday to stay up an extra hour or two on Sunday night and people are still moaning about it being too long and, in the same breath, complaining that the world operates on breakneck speed and they wish it would slow down. You know what’s slow? The Oscars! 

If the show is good, if the presenters are quippy and fun, if everyone, as Duana always says, lets us see that they’re having a good time, which always allows for welcome spontaneity, I don’t give a sh-t how long it is. One of these days, someone like Logan Paul is going to be passing out awards on YouTube on a skateboard that you have to watch through a hole in your sunglasses. That time is coming fast. Until then, give me a four hour Oscars, five hours works too. And Duana and I will be over here, holding ourselves up against the wall while you yell at us and insist the show should be three short hours. 

Have a great weekend!

Yours in gossip,